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Combat Trains

Combat Trains

  • Premiered: 
    November 25, 2015
    (Click date to see TV listings for that day)

  • Network: H2 - UK
  • Category: Series
  • Genre: Documentary
  • Type: Live Action
  • Concept: 
  • Subject Matter: Military/War
  • Tags: transportation

Buy This Show on DVD or Watch Online

No DVDs Available
(That We Know Of)
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Plot Synopsis

For over a century, locomotives played a vital role in wartime, transporting soldiers and supplies to the front lines, serving as mobile hospitals, and even acting as a massive weapon on wheels. COMBAT TRAINS is a one-hour documentary series that explores some of the trains and railways -- from the American Civil War through World War II -- that turned the tides of battles and changed history. Rarely seen archival footage and accounts from vets who were there highlight these stories of engineering genius and extraordinary bravery, supplementing re-creations, expert interviews and engineering graphics. Each episode focuses on a different train or train-line that played a significant role in combat. Stories include those of the ambulance trains of WW1, which carried 461,844 patients to Southampton and Dover; the Great Locomotive Chase of the American Civil War; the 258-mile Burma Railway, also known as Death Railway; and the Holocaust trains used by the Nazis to transport Jews to the concentration camps. Smithsonian Channel aired the U.S. premiere of COMBAT TRAINS on Monday, June 19, 2017 at 8pm ET/PT, showing "The Death Railway" episode, which chronicles the story of the construction of the 258-mile Thai-Burma Railway, including the notorious Hellfire Pass, through the accounts of veterans who lived to tell the tale. It was one of the most accomplished engineering feats of World War II, but also one of the cruelest. This railway, built to supply Japan's invasion of India, cut through mountains and jungles and required over 600 bridges, including the legendary bridge over the River Kwai. But the mission came at the expense of thousands of Allied POWs who were forced to build it.

Production & Distribution

  • Produced by Woodcut Media